Professional Development

We expect that our surgical residents in our standard 5 + 2 track to spend a well-planned two year period pursuing new knowledge and developing of new techniques that advance the field of surgery and patient care.  The knowledge and skill sets obtained during Professional Development time should different surgical residents from the 1200 other outstanding graduate of surgery every year.

This mission has been achieved, and will continue to be a reality, in an environment in which outstanding surgical faculty have the opportunity to work in concert with highly motivated women and men who share this vision.  This faculty-resident relationship represents the best features of mentoring and assures the educational process necessary to achieve the lofty goals of both the mentor and the trainee. We strive to make our trainees better, and they certainly make us better.


  • -Stanford Surgery ranks 10th in NIH funding
  • -Professional Development is the norm
  • -2-3 years in PD
  • -expected after PGY2 year


Current Professional Development Residents

Kovi Bessoff, MD PhD

Kovi is currently participating in the Biodesign Fellowship at  the Texas Medical Center Innovation Institute in Houston, Texas.  Like the program at Stanford, the program focuses on developing a unique solution to an unmet clinical need and developing it into a commercially viable product.  In addition, Kovi is working with Drs. Spain and Knowlton at Stanford to build a robust research infrastructure to help facilitate research in emergency general surgery (EGS).

Funding:  Texas Medical Center Innovation Institute

Katie Blevins, MD PhD

Katie is working with The Biodesign Innovation Fellowship at Stanford. The Biodesign Innovation Fellows learn a proven, project-based approach to identify important health needs, develop innovative diagnostics, devices, or other health technologies to address them, and prepare to bring those products into patient care through start-up, corporate, or other implementation channels.

Funding: Stanford Biodesign Program



Jared Forrester, MD

Jared is working with Lifebox Foundation, a charity organization focused on improving surgical safety, particularly in low and middle income countries (LMIC) through programs around the safe surgery checklist. Lifebox has been focused on delivering pulse oximetry and anesthesia training, delivering over 11,000 in over 100 countries.  Over the next year, Jared will be on site in Jimma, Ethiopia to help improve peri-operative processes central to infection prevention.

Funding: through Lifebox Foundation and the Dept of Surgery at Stanford

Deskha Foster, MD

Deshka is pursing a Ph.D. in Cancer Biology in Dr. Michael Longaker’s Laboratory . She is working on a project characterizing cells involved in scar formation that also contribute to cancer stroma, with the aim of understanding the similarities between healing wounds and tumor proliferation as a potential therapeutic target. She is also working on projects concerning skin scarring and abdominal adhesions.

Funding: American College of Surgeons, the ARTS (Advanced Residency Training at Stanford) program

Kimberly Kopecky, MD

Kimberly is completing a clinical Palliative Care Fellowship and obtaining a masters in Clinical Investigation at the University of Wisconsin Madison.  She hopes to influence how surgeons communicate and align with the perioperative expectations of patients and their families. 

Miquell Miller, MD

Miquell is pursuing a Master's degree in Health Policy in the Department of Health Research and Policy at Stanford University. Some of the skills students gain in this program include advanced biostatistics, health economics, and analysis of healthcare delivery. Her research focus is on improved coordination of care for colorectal patients and providing culturally congruent care from the treatment team. 


Li Ka Shing Surgeons Scholars Grant 

Fluegel Fellowship 


Raja Narayan, MD MPH

Raja is working in the Hepatopancreatobiliary Surgery Lab at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to study radiomic and histologic signatures of tumors to guide individualized perioperative therapy. Utilizing machine learning and large data sets from imaging and tissue banks, he is designing a stratification scheme to deliver therapy to patients based on the idiosyncrasies of their malignancy.   


Funding: Department of Hepatopancreatobiliary Surgery, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center


Graeme Rosenberg, MD

Graeme is part of a multidisciplinary team lead by the Acute Care Surgery Research Group that includes the S-SPIRE Center; the Stanford Department of Anesthesia, Perioperative and Pain Medicine; and the Stanford Department of Psychology. His work focuses on investigating patient- and family-reported outcomes in the trauma and acute care populations. He is exploring the recovery process by learning directly from patient's themselves through a mixed-methods research approach. In the process, he is building a program to longitudinally follow patients and their family members in order to better understand the effect of injury on people's lives. Ultimately, his goal is to find innovative approaches to assist injury survivors in the recovery process, thus improving the quality of care. 


Funding: He is funded by the Department of General Surgery.  

Francesca Salipur, MD

Francesca is a Healthcare Design Fellow at the Stanford Clinical Excellence Research Center, under the mentorship of Drs. Arnie Milstein and Terry Platchek.

Funding: CERC Program

Lindsay Sceats, MD

Lindsay's mentors are Dr. Cindy Kin and Dr. Arden Morris. Her research looks at medical and surgical therapies for ulcerative colitis using 'big data' approaches. She is also doing a Masters in Health Services Research at Stanford during her PD years. 

Funding:  KL2 Mentored Research Career Development Award from Spectrum